How can you help save the environment and convenient yourself at the same time? The answer is quite easy actualy, by installing a garbage disposal. Garbage disposals are one of those unique American inventions that never really got a hold in the rest of the world, similar to drive in cinema. In the United States, over 50% of all households have a garbage disposal, compared to 6% in the United Kingdom and only 3% in Canada. In the rest of the world, they are practically non-existent.
The major stigma attached to garbage disposals is that they damage the sewer system and flood septic tanks. This isn’t true of course and this myth dates back in time before garbage disposal was invented. Most municipalities in the United States had regulation that forbid disposal of food waste through sewer system, which made sense back then. Imagine flushing a banana peel in the toilet and havoc it would cause in your pipes. The company that invented garbage disposals in 1935, InSinkErator, spent quite a lot of time and money convincing municipal authorities to rescind these bans throughout US. Still, in 2008, the city of Raleigh in north Caroline issued a ban on new garbage disposals being installed. They did revoke it only a month later.
Food waste represents quite a challenge for biological disposal. It contains a lot of water, up to 70% and it is always a potential source of public health and sanitation concern. Due to its high water content, garbage incinerators require more energy to burn it and depositing it in landfills creates methane, which is a greenhouse gas. The solution would be a strict separation of organic waste, which would be treated separately, but that requires time and money to implement and we all know how local budget makers treat such measures.
That is why the best kitchen waste disposers are such an elegant solution to the problem. Just let your problematic banana peel through them and it will reduce it to fragments less than 2 mm in diameter. These will easily flow through sewage system until they reach treatment facility, which can deal with organic waste easily.
By using the existing system, the process reduces the costs of operation and eliminates many expenses, like garbage trucks fuel and maintenance. The remaining solid waste can be transformed into fertilizer products (known as biosolids), while they can be upgraded to even capture methane. That is why countries like Sweden and UK are offering encourage and even subsidy the installation of garbage disposals.